Got a minute? Find out how traveling abroad changed Chris Burnett’s life.

by Monica Hoel

Chris Burnett (E&H ’08) isn’t surprised to find himself living in Manhattan and working in finance. He says even as a kid he imagined himself working in a high rise, wearing a suit to work every day, being among the movers and shakers. What he didn’t consider was how much he would miss having a personal life.

His passion is travel. In fact, being bilingual helped him get his first job. And it was on a trip to Europe that he began to understand a different way of having a career. On this particular trip he noticed that the first question he got asked was not about what he did for a living. “People would ask me how my trip was or why I chose this community to visit…and they didn’t ask what my job was.” That’s when he began to realign his thinking.

Chris says he remembers being more than a little nervous when he made the decision to go to work for himself. “My hands were shaking.” But after years of working endless hours for someone else, he decided he needed to make some changes, and he is now very successful as a private consultant for retirement plans.

He has now created a schedule that allows him to live his life better. He has meaningful time for himself, and plenty of time to be a world traveler. He is still working hard, but he has better balance. The pandemic is cramping his wanderlust, but it is giving him time to plan his next big adventure. “I’ve done a lot of Europe and a lot of Central America, I think my next trip might have to be to the continent of Africa.” And perhaps to Emory & Henry Homecoming.

You can listen to a conversation with Chris on WEHC’s The Duck Pond Wall on Thursday, October 22 at 6:30 pm. Stream it live from the web.

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  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/2322-bishop-phyllis-spiegel-honored-with-2023-eamph"><picture class="lw_image"><source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.webp 3x" data-origin="responsive"/><source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.jpg 3x" data-origin="responsive"/><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.jpg" alt="Rev. Phyllis Spiegel E&H Class of 1988 (This headshot was taken by E&H alumna Brenda Kiekhefer Pottinger. Phyllis and Brenda met ..." width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/104,700,1200,1796/11191_Phyllis_Spiegel.rev.1651497615.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1096" data-max-h="1096" loading="lazy" data-optimized="true"/></picture></a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/2322-bishop-phyllis-spiegel-honored-with-2023-eamph">Bishop Phyllis Spiegel Honored with 2023 E&H Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"><p> The award is given to an individual who has attained distinguished achievements in a professional or volunteer capacity, or has shown special creativity and ingenuity.<br/><br/><br/><br/></p><a href="/live/news/2322-bishop-phyllis-spiegel-honored-with-2023-eamph" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>